Taking New Year’s Resolutions to the Next Level

Using the various resources available, such as vision boards and planners, New Year’s resolutions can become easier to maintain

Every year without fail, millions of Americans of all ages and backgrounds set New Year’s Resolutions in hopes of becoming a better version of themselves in the new year. However, it has become customary for people to give up on their resolutions after just a few months, let alone a few weeks. By placing such reverence on them, New Year’s resolutions are set apart from ordinary goals and makes them seem unattainable. However, it is important to remember that New Year’s resolutions are like any other goal in the sense that people must take action to succeed with them. The failure to meet these resolutions can be attributed to a number of reasons, such as lack of specificity in goals and expecting a sudden change in habitual behaviors.

“When you shift your habits, any shift in habits is always difficult…I think people probably take off more than they can handle, even if it was well-intentioned,” math teacher David Gesk said.

There are many helpful resources and practical steps which can help shift New Year’s resolutions into a powerful catalyst for meaningful change in one’s life. People can make goals for a plethora of different reasons. From setting health and fitness goals, to personal goals, to even lifetime goals, many people try to create optimistic and pragmatic goals. However, all too often, people can become distracted and may sometimes forget their goals altogether. However, there are available solutions.

1. Planners

Good old-fashioned paper planners can allow you to note specific steps that you can take each day of the week to accomplish your goal, or goals, of the year. For instance, say your new year’s resolution is: ‘Read 12 books over the course of this year.’ For each day in your planner, give yourself a quantifiable amount of pages or chapters of the book to read and continue this moving forward.

2. Digital Apps

In this seemingly ultra-digital age, smartphone apps are a key tool at the top of the list. One popular app to help you increase your productivity and stay on track of your goals is Strides. Strides users follow three simple steps: specify your goal, set regular notifications to keep you accountable on your progress and continue to work towards your goal until the final day. This application is available to download onto any mobile device.

3. Vision Boards

A vision board is a display of various motivational images which constantly remind students why they keep working hard towards a desirable goal. Vision boards are a creative way to be inspired and often include quotes, pictures of loved ones and more. First, clearly think about why you want to accomplish a certain goal, make your vision board and then put it in a place where you can see it everyday.

4. Goal Buddies

Setting and achieving goals is more entertaining with a friend by your side to keep you on track and constantly lifting you up. For example, if your goal is to run or work out every day, a goal buddy can help you out by joining you and/or constantly reminding you not to give up. According to a Stanford University article, “studies show that something as simple as texting a buddy when you take an action toward your goal triples the rate of success.”